Pursuing Sustainable Science- Bristol Myers Squibb

Transforming the world through sustainable science: BMS earns prestigious 2021 Green Chemistry Award for citrus-based innovation


A team of BMS scientists and their collaboration partners at the Scripps Research Institute won the prestigious US Environmental Protection Agency’s Green Chemistry Challenge Award for inventing a series of reagents derived from citrus peels.

The new reagents can enable the formation of novel therapeutics and are made in fewer steps than comparable reagents, reducing the quantity of raw materials needed and avoiding the formation of byproduct waste. Moreover, they are more selective, enabling more efficient chemical reactions.

In one application, use of the new reagents generated a 16-fold improvement in chemical yield over conventional approaches and an estimated savings of more than $1 million per kilogram of the final compound.

"This is technology that transcends the portfolio. It’s not about a single medicine. It’s about discovering new tools that may enable us to discover tomorrow’s medicines."
– Martin Eastgate

Beyond increased efficiency and the ability to prepare novel compounds, this new class of reagents offers sustainability benefits due to their source material. They are made from limonene–an oil derived from citrus fruit peels–a renewable, inexpensive and abundant resource which is otherwise a waste product of agriculture.

“This is technology that transcends the portfolio and spans discovery through development,” said, Martin Eastgate, Bristol Myers Squibb’s Executive Director, Chemistry Research. “The team focused on discovering new tools that can enable us to discover novel molecules and new kinds of conjugate compounds–i.e., tomorrow’s assets–and to link that innovation directly to our ability to develop and supply those innovative assets seamlessly to patients.”

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2021 Annual Report


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The patient stories shared in this Annual Report depict individual patient responses to our medicines or investigational compounds and are not representative of all patient responses. In addition, there is no guarantee that potential drugs or indications still in development will receive regulatory approval. This Annual Report contains statements about the company’s future plans and prospects that constitute forward-looking statements for purposes of the safe harbor provisions under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results may differ from those indicated as a result of various important factors, including those discussed in the company’s most recent annual report on Form 10-K and reports on Form 10-Q and Form 8-K. These documents are available from the SEC, the Bristol-Myers Squibb website or from Bristol-Myers Squibb Investor Relations. In addition, any forward-looking statements represent our estimates only as of the date hereof and should not be relied upon as representing our estimates as of any subsequent date. While we may elect to update forward-looking statements at some point in the future, we specifically disclaim any obligation to do so, even if our estimates change. This Annual Report also contains certain non-GAAP financial measures, adjusted to exclude certain costs, expenses, gains and losses and other specified items. Reconciliations of these non-GAAP financial measures to the most comparable GAAP measures are available on the company’s website at www.bms.com.